I'm an appliance pro – the mistakes we all make when washing our clothes that add to energy bills

THE way you wash your clothes could be adding to your energy bill without you even realising.

We spoke to Luke Gammons, director of UK appliance store Wades, and pulled together some top tips from experts to help you use your appliance more efficiently.

In April this year, households saw their energy bill jump to a new high when Ofcom raised the price cap by 54%, an extra £693 a year.

And bills are expected to shoot up by a staggering £600 again this October, when the energy price cap is revised, meaning they could reach £2,800.

There are also plans to adjust the cap every three months instead of six, meaning prices could change more frequently in future.

Here's how to claim back roughly £40 a year on your bills with these expert tips.

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Do a bigger load

Instead of doing smaller washes regularly, hold off until you have a load that will fill the drum.

Doing this could allow you to cut out at least one load a week.

And if you make one cut a week for the whole year, you could save £14.56.

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It is estimated that a six litre washing machine uses around 1kWh of energy for an hour long cycle.

Currently, 1kWh of electricity costs 28p according to Ofgem.

So washing your clothes once a week for a year would cost you £14.56.

That's compared to £29.12 if you wash your clothes twice a week for a year.

Choose a lower temperature

Putting your clothes on a very hot wash could be burning through your cash.

Energy Saving Trust estimates that you could save £12 a year off your bills if you choose a 30 degree wash as opposed to a 40 degree one.

And if you wash your clothes on anything higher than 40 degrees, you'll be making even bigger savings.

Choose a slower setting

Expert Luke Gammons, director of UK appliance store Wades, warns people about using the fast setting on their washing machines.

Though you may be in a hurry, it pays to choose a slower cycle.

Luke explains that certain items can damage the appliance if run on high speeds, like towels and other heavy materials.

This is because they soak up water very quickly without time to separate from one another, therefore battering the inside of the machine when they are spun at high speed as they clump together.

According to Checkatrade, it can cost up to £250 to repair a washing machine drum, which many people can't afford spare.

Stick with the economy setting

Energy efficiency ratings for most appliances are based on the machine's economy setting.

So sticking to the eco setting when putting a wash on is the cheapest and most planet-friendly way to clean your clothes.

British Gas engineer Joanna Flowers says you can save £10 a year by opting for this setting.

Meanwhile, one savvy saver has stashed away £17,000 in one year by cutting her food costs and bills – here's how.

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Plus, we reveal which areas are giving extra cash on top of the £150 council tax rebate.

And here's all the help you can get if you're struggling with bills.

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